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CubeSat Geiger Müller Design Notes

ConSat 1 Space Concordia: Winners of Geocentrix's 2012 Canadian Satellite Design Challenge.

Here I present some work I did on Space Concordia's ConSat 1 CubeSat as Payload Lead back in 2012. I was involved in the development of several payload experiments, i.e., a Nanotechnology based Gas Analyzer, a Flat Langmuir Probe, a Solid-State Radiation Counter, and a Geiger Müller based Proportional Counter. All of these devices where developed for the exploration of the South Atlantic Anomaly (SAA), ConSat 1's mission. Space Concordia won Geocentrix's Satellite Design Challenge on Sept. 29th, 2012, the birthday of the Alouette 1, launched back in 1962. Here I present some design for the Geiger Müller based Proportional Counter.

The following sections are on the Geiger Müller based Proportional Counter development:

  1. Proportional Counter Theory in a Nutshell
  2. Low Earth Orbit (LEO) Environment
  3. Proportional Counter Design
  4. Arduino Source Code

The final product was built and integrated within ConSat 1 by Space Concordia's CubeSat team. The following figure shows the finalized schematic of the payload PCB for ConSat-1.

Finalized Surface Mount Proportional Counter Circuit for installation in ConSat-1.

The following figure shows the top end of the satellite on the radiation test bench with the proportional counter subsystem installed.

Installation and Testing of Proportional Counter Circuit in Upper Portion of the CubeSat.

The circuit was calibrated, using the quick calibration method, at




The CubeSat was then vacuum and shake tested in Ottawa as part of the competition.


Last Updated: 5:01 PM Sept. 15th, 2014

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